even though i went to bed early around midnight, i couldn't sleep last night, too worried about the delay in the solar panel installation. i watched a few episodes of happy endings, read some books (artemis by andy weir, tampa by alissa nutting, and calculus for dummies 2nd edition), and surfed the web. i got out bed at one point to surf the web in the dark living room, trying to find out the finals steps of an installation, and the criteria for applying for the 30% solar energy tax credit (permission to operate - PTO - granted by the inspector by the end of the year). i wished it was morning already, so lucas would either call me back or i'd call him. eventually i did grow tired enough to fall asleep, around 4am. i woke up intermittently, checking the time, getting up by 8:30am.

i set up my computer and notebook on the seldom used dining table, just to make it seem more formal, and a better place to do actual work. i waited until 9:30am before i call lucas after waiting patiently by the phone for him to contact me. my strategy is to be forceful yet friendly, didn't want him to piss him off and have him purposely punish us by delaying the installation even more. he quoted the date he told me a week ago - december 20th - as the installation date, but once more prefaced with the possibility of an earlier time if another project decided to cancel (which i doubted). i asked him for the real reason why there was all this delay, and he told me that united solar actually does contract work for other solar companies. they're obligated to finish a certain amount, so what ends up happening is their own customers suffer in the process. that made sense, it didn't make me feel better, but at least i finally knew what was going on. i asked lucas to send me the installation date in writing instead of just telling me over the phone. i asked him what addition steps were there after the install. he said the inspector will come by a day or two afterwards and then the municipal electric company will replace the meter. as for a timeframe, he wasn't sure.

after speaking with lucas (i felt a bit better), i called belmont light for information about the solar installation. the receptionist patched me to an organization called the belmont solar coach, where i spoke with a phil. he was helpful, but gave me information i already knew, when what i really wanted was a final installation timeframe. he heard of united solar and said they might've done an installation at a house on pleasant street. he told me belmont has the most number of solar systems out of all the other towns in massachusetts, with 260 households. phil did however give me the contact information of the woman at belmont light who would know the answers to my questions. i spoke with becca keen, she said the inspector typically is there the day of the installation. as for replacing the meter, she said that there are no longer analog meters in belmont, and that every household has been converted to digital meters, which seem to be already compatible for net metering.

i called my father to let him know the news. he was worried that the 20th might be too late, and wanted me to push for an earlier date.

i had some granola and yogurt for lunch. in the afternoon i biked to belmont on my trek utility bike. i haven't biked long distance in a while so i felt a little out of shape. i'll be back in riding form after a few weeks, now that i've put my motorcycle away for the season.

i shouldn't have gone to belmont as my parents weren't home for much of the day, as my mother had 2 separate medical appointments (a physical therapy session in davis, a follow-up in cambridge). they came home around 5:30pm but my father left soon afterwards to take care of my grand uncle. my mother and i ended up having dinner, some very spicy lousi rice noodles.

i rode back home, a bit colder in the dark. after a shower i settled down to watch the patriots-dolphins game. patriots only had the lead briefly, when they were up 7-6, but then trailed the rest of the game, as miami found a winning strategy against new england. patriots were ineffective, never once converting on third down. patriots have no problems beating the dolphins in foxboro, but miami is patriots kryptonite, with the pats having a losing record here at this stadium. dolphins win in an upset, 27-20. i don't feel too bad. new england faces pittsburgh on sunday, the winner will probably be the number one seed in the AFC.

i figured out how to use channel pear service with my roku. it's hard to describe what channel pear is, but it allows you to watch streaming cable channels for free (free in the fact that a basic account allows 5 free channels, any more costs money). why is this important? because it's one of the few ways a cordcutter like myself can watch MSNBC. now i can get my daily dose of liberal news! the other channels i signed up for besides MSNBC are adult swim, VH1 classic, 24/7 king of the hill channel, and a live feed of NYC time square (street level).